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BY DR. ANDREA PURCELL

We have seen a steady increase in positive COVID-19 cases in the past few weeks. As you may know, over twenty states are experiencing a rise in numbers… however Arizona is in the top four states with rapidly increasing numbers.

Saving lives used to be left up to firemen, nurses, emergency medical technicians, paramedics, doctors and super heroes.  

That no longer applies, this year each one of us gets to play super hero. Each one of us has the ability to positively impact the future of this year and can literally save someone else’s life.

Every action has a reaction. When the reaction occurs we then are left with the consequences of the action.

In this current situation, every decision we make carries a consequence to ourselves and our neighbors. 

We may not realize how our personal actions impact on such a large scale, but they do. It’s easy to lose sight of what’s important when we flounder in fear, grief and disappointment. Yes, life has changed, it will continue to change. Hopefully for the better if we unite for a common cause.  We have a lot to learn. We need to learn how to work together collectively.

Looking forward as we turn the corner into the second half of 2020 we must recognize the effects of our individual actions and how they impact our community, our state, and our nation.

Each one of us based on our actions has the ability to influence whether there will be a second wave of shutdowns, if schools will reopen in August, the permanent closure of businesses and the elimination of more jobs.

As leaders of our families it is important to help those we love understand what is truly essential and what falls into the non-essential Categories.

Tip 1: Hold a Family Meeting

Yes, an official family meeting. In your professional life, you probably run meetings all the time. It’s time to do it with the important people in your life. Perhaps you had a family meeting when shelter in place began. Now it’s summer and the rules of engagement have changed once again. The time has come to call all of the people who live under your roof together.

If you aren’t sure how to do this make it official, present the facts, discuss your family’s risks, and outline a summer plan to keep two main goals in mind.

#1 Number one, maintain everyone’s health and safety.

#2 Number two, help keep your state strong so that it won’t have to enter another mandated shelter in place.

Do your best to get everyone on the same page when it comes to strategizing how each one of you can help mitigate damage and save lives.

Get down to the nitty gritty. Have a real conversation about what you will and will not be doing this summer. Individually and/or together. This applies to family members functioning individually but also when operating within a group environment.

To give you a few talking points to open up the meeting check out this article: Safe and At Risk Summer Activities

Tip 2: Build a Family plan

Get the essentials locked into place. You know, the absolute deal breakers about what you as a family are committed to. Then the non-essentials won’t dominate the conversation. Start out by asking what is essential and what isn’t. Then evaluate the non-essentials. Ask if something non-essential is worth taking the risk over? And even though it may not be a direct risk to a person in your family will it negatively impact the remainder of this year and quality of life overall?

This doesn’t mean that we suffer or deprive ourselves of a great quality of life. It means that we have been given the opportunity to create a new way that is safer to achieve what we are wanting. It’s time to put on our thinking caps and problem solve as a family.

Here’s the reality:

Shelter in place was not a long-term strategy to save everyone from being exposed to covid. It was there to flatten the curve and minimize the burden to our healthcare system. When overburdened, more lives are lost. Needlessly. In the current and emerging landscape of covid we each play a role. It is a role we should take seriously.

United we stand in our families, our communities, and our nation. With a common purpose and aim. For the United States to come back stronger and better from having overcome this threat.

Yours in Good Health,

Dr. Purcell

P.S. Now more than ever it is important to stay connected. Opt-in below to receive my weekly emails.  I will continue to share current health updates and tips. 
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